By Steven Lockley, Ph.D.
We live in an increasingly 24/7 society, with work, family, and social pressures all chipping away at our sleep. Couple this with long work hours, shift-work, chronic caffeine use and exposure to the glow of computer screens late into the night, and it may be much more than sleep that suffers. We may also be throwing off the body clock, or circadian rhythm, and its control of hundreds of body processes that keep us healthy and feeling well. While much is yet to be learned, there is growing evidence that a misaligned body clock can contribute not only to sleep problems, but also increase risk of developing diabetes, depression, obesity and even some forms of cancer.